Knowing how to purify water using chlorine can be very valuable knowledge when short of options. Of course, the purifier is commonly used around us, but it may be surprising that only a few of us use it effectively. There are several cases of people suffering water-related complications despite having treated their water with chlorine.
Steps To Purify Water Using Chlorine
As I mentioned earlier, there are common errors committed when purifying water with chlorine. Let us look at the steps involved below to ensure that our purified water is indeed purified.
The steps to purify water using chlorine are:
- First, select a brand that doesn’t have added smells or other chemicals — or, at least, one that does not have a strong scent. The chlorine concentration in your product should be between 5.25% – 8.25%.
- Filter water to remove sediment or debris before adding chlorine tablets.
- The water to be filtered should be in clean containers. Depending on the tablets you have, the number to add to the water may differ, and so may the waiting period. Three tablets should be enough for a quart of water (remember that this count may be higher or less).
- Mix water thoroughly & leave for some time according to instructions.
- If unsure of the waiting period, cover overnight or until the scent cannot be perceived anymore.
By the way, bleach can also come in handy in the absence of chlorine, iodine, or other cleansers. The process is typically the same as explained above.
Should You Use Chlorine To Purify Water?
There is hardly a reason not to use chlorine as a purifier. Sodium Dichloroisocyanurate (NaDCC), the main ingredient in its most effective tablets, is widely accepted worldwide. In fact, it is recommended by several reputable health-supportive organizations, including UNICEF. The tablets are, therefore, a common presence in households.
Speaking from a historical perspective, chlorine has been used as a water purifier in several forms. Some chlorine tablets work pretty fast, gathering and eliminating particles within minutes, while others may take some hours for optimum effects. For instance, chlorine dioxides, although highly effective, take up to 4 hours to work effectively. You may have to be extra careful when selecting your tablets, though.
Chlorine rarely has side effects, unlike other purifiers like iodine. Persons who are allergic to iodine are advised to use chlorine.
However, there are a few cons associated with the use of chlorine as a purifier. The most pertinent is that chlorine does not kill 100% of germs or pathogens in the water. Also, when water is treated with chlorine, the purifier’s smell & taste are evident in the water. A helpful thing to do is add vitamin C to improve the flavor.
Concluding Thoughts on How To Purify Water Using Chlorine
In many quarters, chlorine is considered a more effective disinfectant than iodine, but the truth is that each has its pros & cons. As for iodine, I’d advise that you keep some of its products handy since they do not expire. Note that instructions are always crucial, so pay close attention to them. To conclude, knowing how to purify water using chlorine or any other chemical is essential in your survival handbook.